LISTS OF COOL

This week, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences not only announced the top 10 live-action shorts moving forward in their voting process for the 89th Academy Awards. They also narrowed down the qualifying animated shorts to a top 10. The final nominees in both categories will be named on January 24th. Congrats to all of the filmmakers!  The full list of potential animated nominees:  Blind Vaysha, dir by. Theodore Usher Borrowed Time, dir by. Andrew Coats and Lou Hamou Lhadj Happy End, dir. by Jan Saska The Head Vanishes, dir. by Franck Dion Inner Workings, dir. by Leo Matsuda Once upon a Line, dir. by Alicia Jasina Pear Cider and Cigarettes, dir. by Robert Valley Pearl, dir. by Patrick Osborne Piper, dir. by Alan Barillaro Sous Tes Doigts (Under Your Fingers), dir. by Marie-Christine Courtès

If you've been to the movies this summer, you've probably had a lot of fun watching dinosaurs behave badly, deadly robots travel through time or the earthquake-induced, computer-generated destruction of California.  These films and other blockbusters have a place in our culture, but don't miss checking out what is in many ways a banner season for risk-taking and refreshing independent movies. To name just a few out now: Sundance Grand Jury Prize winners Me and Earl and the Dying Girl and The Wolfpack; the super-fresh Dope; the wonderful documentaries What Happened, Miss Simone?AmyCartel LandThe Look of Silence and, one of my favorites, the fascinating Best of Enemies; and on the narrative side, the adventurous and bold TangerineLila & EveThe Stanford Prison Experiment and The End of the Tour.  In the weeks to come, look out for the white-knuckle Cop Car, the wise-beyond-its-years The Diary of a Teenage Girl, and Sundance Audience Award winner Meru.  

 

The eighties: A magical time filled with mainstream cinema that championed such off-the-wall ideas as the possibility that skateboarding could help fight crime, that high school-aged kids are worthy of the epic adventure treatment and even that aliens are our friends (or, at the very least, relatable beings that relish the opportunity to chow down on classic junk food). That era might be over, but it hasn't been forgotten, especially at Brooklyn's own BAMcinématek, which is kicking off a massive new screening series -- appropriately called "Indie '80s" -- that seeks to "[spotlight] the independent films of the neglected decade between the golden age of 70's New Hollywood and the indie boom of the 90s."  Read more

We’re just about midway through 2015, and that means taking stock of the cinematic year so far. In terms of feature films, it’s been a stellar year, with everything from “Inside Out” and “Mad Max: Fury Road” to “The Duke Of Burgundy” and “L’il Quinquin” making it one of the strongest first six months of a moviegoing calendar that we can remember  with a plethora of equally excellent movies having cropped up at festivals. But to focus on the fiction arena would be to miss whole swaths of great cinema, because the documentaries of the first half of 2015 have been excellent. Here's Indiewire's top picks for the 2015 so far. 

Want to be an indie filmmaker? Of course, you do! In this tongue-in-cheek essay, filmmaker and actor Kentucker Audley explains why you should make indie films. With TV shows on the decline and facing a troubled future (and mark my words, virtual reality is a fad) indie filmmakers are now at the forefront of a new media landscape. But there are plenty of reasons to make indie films besides being on the cutting edge — let's take a look at why so many of our most talented youngsters are turning to indie film…CLICK HERE